BT Fusion – Fixed line and mobile convergence

by Andy Polaine on June 17, 2005

This press release from Ovum looks like my dreams for using just one phone are nearer, though the convergence between the landline and mobile isn’t here in Australia yet.

As we previewed in EuroView last week, BT today launched its fixed-mobile convergence (FMC) service. This is a mobile that acts as a normal GSM phone outside the home, but inside routes calls through a device (called a hub by BT) and onto the BT Broadband line. The really clever bit is that if you move away from the hub the call will seamlessly transfer to a mobile base station, and the from a base station to the hub the other way too.

BT is launching with two versions of BT Fusion. BT Fusion 100 offers 100 free minutes for £9.99 per month. BT Fusion 200 offers 200 free call minutes at £14.99 per month. BT provides the handsets and hub free as part of these packages. BT will provide service to 400 early adopters starting now, and will make the service more widely available in September.

Now, the kicker for BT appears to be that it captures all that potential lost revenue by pulling people back into their mobile service and pulling them back into their landline service. I don’t quite get whether the “broadband” part is actually VOIP or some BT version of it (after all, it’s all VOIP at some point). What I want is to be able to use Skype or whatever via my mobile phone. Perhaps with a Bluetooth headset on OS X Tiger this is possible, though I haven’t tried it yet. At least the headset would go between my broadband connection and my mobile, but it won’t do the natty switching thing that Fusion does.

{ 1 comment… read it below or add one }

1 OrangeDude June 17, 2005 at 2:23 pm

Orange mobile had this some time ago out here, ‘artificially’. The one orange handset (cdma) would charge you local rates if you called on a designated mobile cell, and if you were on any other cell it would charge you mobile rates. Hence rather than tie you into ‘around the house, route through my net access’, it opened up an entire suburb or two. One phone, all areas usage. Same deal with people calling you, mobile or landline rates depending on what cell you were sitting on at the time.

Skype via a mobile sounds cool. Data rates are coming down. Skype with OSX via bt headset is indeed possible; even worked in 10.3 for me

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